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Village warns of development boom

PUBLISHED: 05:36 23 January 2003 | UPDATED: 16:12 24 February 2010

MOVES to convert acres of land into housing have run into fierce opposition from local people who fear it could triple their community's size, ruin its character and turn it in to a commuter village.

MOVES to convert acres of land into housing have run into fierce opposition from local people who fear it could triple their community's size, ruin its character and turn it in to a commuter village.

As part of the Local Plan review, landowners have lobbied Mid Suffolk District Council to earmark eight sites in Creeting St Mary, near the A140, A14 and Needham Market, as potential housing developments.

But residents are so concerned that around 300 packed into the village hall for a public meeting to discuss the plans and an action group is now being formed and letters sent to the council.

The meeting was called by the parish council on Tuesday night and Jacqui Mann, parish councillor, said the village's proximity to the A14 and A140 would make it an ideal commuter choice.

She said: "There were various size developments proposed, but the largest is 28 acres on All Saints Road. All told the developments would mean an extra 800 homes.

"People want to keep the character of the village. Feelings are very strong and people are totally opposed to all eight developments. We are not just NIMBYs, there are very big concerns.''

Residents' fears include losing the village community spirit, the extra traffic and unsuitability of local roads for so many extra homes.

Audrey Lilley, Mid Suffolk district councillor for the village, said: "I think it is highly unlikely these land bids will go through, the majority of them are way over the top in size.

"One or two people said they would welcome some smaller developments of half a dozen houses for the younger people, but these land bids were for 50, 200, 300 homes, which is ludicrous.''

n To find you more about the action group call Jacqui Mann on 01449 721713.

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